Quality not quantity is certainly proving a winning formula for the McGillivrays from Barcaldine Home Farm, Oban, when their small herd produced the overall cattle champion for the second year in succession at Dalmally.

Last year, Ewen and his son, also Ewen, took the tri-colour with a home-bred Limousin cross bullock, whereas this year, their top show performer was the pedigree Limousin, Creran Oban Lass, a 10-month-old heifer by the AI sire, Powerful Irish from their Creran herd which numbers just six cows.

“She’s a very, very good heifer with very few faults,” said the commercial cattle judge, John Semple, Campbeltown, who teamed up with the Highland cattle judge, Neil McLellan, Islay, to select the overall cattle winner.

Mr McLellan added: “It was a very difficult competition to judge as the Highland was also an outstanding animal and a fantastic example of a great west coast cow.”

No stranger to the top awards, Oban Lass was overall champion of champions at Appin and reserve supreme cattle at Lorn, last month. Backed by some of the best genetics in the business, her dam, Lodge Iccola, bought as a weaned calf from Ian and Wendy Callion, was reserve continental at Oban, and last year bred the 10,000gns Creran Morinjho, sold at Stirling.

Situated in the shadow of Ben Cruachan, coupled with some glorious autumnal weather, this year's Dalmally Show attracted one of the largest crowds of spectators seen in recent years, with many relishing the picture postcard views and of course the judging of the Highland cattle.

It was the champion from this section that stood next to the supreme to lift the reserve cattle honours too for Jon and Queenie Strickland’s Cladich fold from Dalmally.

Their show stopper, Capleadh Buidhebeg 4 of Claddich, shown by stockman Stuart Campbell, was following on from her breed championship win at Beith Show. First at Mid Argyll, this five-year-old was shown with a three-week-old heifer calf at foot.

Inside the market, the Blackface sheep section again boasted a cracking line up of entries which was eventually won by a home-bred gimmer from Lochgoilhead farmers, Davie and Jock Jackson, who run 2000 ewes in their Pole flock.

Their best, a daughter of a £5000 Crossflatt, is out of a home-bred ewe by a £22,000 Crossflatt and was on her first outing.

A Cheviot gimmer all the way from Mull, picked up the any other breed championship for Iain McKay, Torloisk, when his reserve winner from Lochaber, a daughter of a Balnakeil sire, out of a ewe by a Brackside ram, won the overall against the any other native breed champion and continental leader.

LEADING awards

Highland cattle (Judge: N McLellan, Islay). Champion – Mrs JH Strickland, Cladich, Dalmally, with Capleadh Buidhebeg 4 of Cladich, a five-year-old cow brought out by stockman Stuart Campbell. She is by Aonghas of An Sidhean which goes back to the old Banrigh of Cladich line and last year stood third at the Highland, champion at Lorn and reserve at Mid Argyll. She was shown with three-week-old heifer calf at foot by Campbell of Tilbouries and this year stood champion at Beith and first at Mid Argyll. Reserve – D Logan, Greenhead, Alva, with Ban-i-Lara 9 of Blairlogan, a home-bred two-year-old heifer by Logan of Muingairigh and bred from a previous home-bred Ban-i-Lara that was champion at the Great Yorkshire in 2011. Senior female champion at the Stars of the Future last year, she was also reserve at Beith, and champion at Drymen, Stirling and the Great Yorkshire earlier this year. Confined champion – Mrs JH Strickland, Cladich, Dalmally, with the champion. Reserve confined – D McLaughlin, Castles Estate, Dalmally, with a previously unshown seven-month-old bull calf shown by Jadyen Brown. He is by Eion Mhor 17 of Mottistone and out of a privately purchased Glengorm-bred cow. Confined and open senior cow, confined and open junior cow, confined and open heifer calf, confined and open yearling heifer, confined two-year-old heifer, confined junior bull, confined yearling bull – Mrs JH Strickland. Confined and open bull calf – Castles Estate. Confined three-year-old heifer – R Schuster. Three-year-old heifer – E McMillan. Two-year-old heifer – D Logan. Junior bull – W and T Thomson, Woodneuk, Barrhead. Yearling bull – Heather Corrigal, The Ranch, Letham, Angus. Young handlers – 1, Jayden McLaughlin; 2, Tara Adams; 3, Alan Cameron; 4, Iona MacKay.

Commercial beef (Judge: J Semple, Campbeltown). Champion – E MacGillivray and Son, Barcaldine Home Farm, Oban, with the pure Limousin heifer calf, Creran Oban Lass, a 10-month-old daughter of Powerful Irish. She is bred from the bought in weaned calf, Lodge Iccola, the reserve-pure-bred continental at Lorn Show. Oban Lass which is a full sister to Creran Morinho, the 10,000gns bull sold at Stirling in February, was champion at Lorn and Appin. Reserve – E MacGillivray and son also Ewen with a May-born Limousin cross bull by Lodge Hamlet, bred from a home-bred Limousin cross cow. He was second at Lorn and Appin. Confined – Champion and reserve – M Hall, Tombuie, Dalmally, with a February-born Limousin cross bullock by an AI sire and out of a Limousin cross cow. He was on his first outing and is destined for the calf sales here, next month. Reserve was a March-born Limousin cross heifer bred from a British Blue cross cow. She is to be retained for a cow. Confined and open cow, 2018-born confined calf, confined and open bred pair – M Walker. 2018-born calf, 2019-born calf– E McGillivray. Confined and open native calf born 2019 – A McLaren, Craig Farm, Dalmally.

Galloway (Judge: J Semple). Champion – Amanda and Lynne MacLean, Inverglen, Barcaldine, Oban, with Bridget 35 of Kilnstown, a two-year-old heifer that was the top priced Galloway female at the breed sale at Carlisle in November. She is by Welling of Kilnstown and out of the Buccleuch Adonis daughter, Bridget 32 of Kilnstown. First at Lorn. Reserve – Carolyn Ross, Greenhead, Alva, with the second prize heifer, Barlaes Katie 82, an in-calf heifer due at the end of October. She is by Watchman of Kilnstown and was champion native at Kilmacolm. Heifer, calf – A and L MacLean.

Blackface open (Judge: D Morrison, Dalwyne, Barr). Champion – D and J Jackson, Pole, Lochgoilhead, with a previously unshown gimmer by a £5000 Crossflatt, out of a ewe by a £22,000 Crossflatt, one of 2000 Blackface ewes in the flock. Reserve – Messrs MacLean, Largie, Ardfern, Lochgilphead, with a tup lamb by a £4500 Crammie bred from a Lurg draft ewe by a £600 Lurg. He was male champion and reserve at Campbeltown and confined champion at Mid Argyll.

Blackface confined – Champion – J Macpherson and Sons, Balliemeanoch, Dalmally, with a shearling ram by a £1400 Connachan and bred from Prosecco, the family’s top show winning ewe by the £6000 Connachan The Skull, and reserve with a gimmer owned by Lorna Macpherson, by a £1200 Elmscleugh, out of a £9000 Midlock-sired ewe.

Blackface YFC – Champion – Lorna Macpherson, Balliemeanoch, with the reserve confined champion, a gimmer by a £1200 Elmscleugh, out of a £9000 Midlock-sired ewe. Reserve – Ryan Jackson (12), Pole, Lochgoilhead, with a ewe lamb by the home-bred Pole-r-bear, by a Crossflatt ram, out of a ewe by a £50,000 Pole. YFC adult female, YFC adult male – L Macpherson. YFC tup lamb – Linsey Ronald, Saulmore, Connel. YFC ewe lamb – Ryan Jackson. Confined aged ram, confined two-shear ram, confined shearling ram, shearling ram, confined ram lamb, confined ewe, confined two-year-old ewe, confined ewe lamb, confined and open group – J Macpherson and Sons. Aged ram, two-year-old ewe – D Murray, Lurgan, Aberfeldy. Two-shear ram – F Ronald, Saulmore, Connel. Ram lamb – Messrs MacLean. Ewe – Tay and Torridon Estates, North Amulree, Amulree, Dunkeld. Confined gimmer – Lorna Macpherson. Gimmer – D and J Jackson. Ewe lamb – R and I Shaw, Acharonich, Barbreck, Lochgilphead.

Cheviot (Judge: P Laidlaw). Champion – I MacKay, Torloisk, Mull, with a gimmer by a Balnakeil sire, out of a ewe by a Brackside ram. Reserve at Lochaber and reserve with a ewe shown by daughters, Kate (10) and Eilidh (13) MacKay. She is by a Brackside ram, out of a Torrish ewe and was reserve at Bunessan. Ram, ram lamb – C Stewart, Cretshengan, Millhouse, Ormsary. Ewe, gimmer – I MacKay. Ewe lamb – A Bevis.

Any other native (Judge: P Laidlaw). Champion – J McLaren, Craig, Dalmally, with a Lleyn gimmer by an Incheoch ram, out of a home-bred ewe. First outing. Reserve – Frazer Prentice (8) Balliemore, Kilmichael, Lochgilphead, with the two-crop ewe, Scarlet, gifted from Santa in 2017. Champion at Lorn in 2018. Ram, ram lamb, gimmer, ewe lamb – J McLaren. Ewe – Frazer Prentice.

Any other continental (Judge: P Laidlaw). Champion – G Gillespie, Crosshill, Campbeltown, with a two-crop Texel ewe by a Milnbank tup bought at Kelso four years ago, out of a home-bred ewe that goes back to Mr Gillespie’s foundation Watchknowe female. She is a twin sister to the Campbeltown champion. Reserve – G McLean, Torbhlaren, Kilmichael, with a Texel ewe lamb that was reserve confined inter-breed champion at Mid Argyll. She is by Feddal Road Boss Hogg and bred from a Feddal Road gimmer bought privately. Ram, ewe – G Gillespie. Ram lamb – O Bowman, Upper Cragabus, Islay. Gimmer – J McLaren. Ewe lamb – G McLean. Prime lambs – Rosslyn Smith. Young handlers – 1, Kate MacKay; 2, Archie McNaughton; 3, Iona MacKay; 4, Eilidh MacKay; 5, Ann Bowman.